Job application tips
Your CV is the most important part of your application. You can design your CV more or less how you want. There is no universally accepted format. However it’s worth taking note of the following points:
- Your CV should not be more than two pages long; maximum three pages (if it’s unavoidable).
- Organise your CV into sections. If you already have a lot of professional experience, list this first in its own section. If however you have just completed your training, list your education and qualifications first.
- You should always list the most recent items at the top of each section (reverse chronological order).
- Don’t forget to add your personal details at the top of the first page, if necessary in the header: Name, address, telephone number, email address, date of birth and (if applicable) your visa status.
Use the cover letter to tell us about why you are applying (why Hirslanden?), as well as important information regarding your application, e.g. if you were told about the position by a friend or an acquaintance (as they may be eligible for a commission for referring you). The aim of the cover letter is not to summarise your CV, but to explain exactly why you would like to work at Hirslanden and why you are interested in this position. One A4 page is sufficient.
Have you been invited to attend an interview? Congratulations! Here are some tips to help make the interview a success for everyone involved:
Gather information about the company
Always find out about the company you have applied for before you attend the interview. Visit the company’s website and write down the most important Facts and Figures. The more information about the company you can mention during the interview, the more interested you will appear (but this doesn’t mean you have to know everything off by heart). If you have looked carefully the website, it will be clear whether or not you identify with the company’s Vision and Strategy.
Connect with us on social media!
Many modern companies can also be found on social media platforms and maintain their own accounts for job seekers. This online presence provides exciting insights into the company and often includes comments and posts from current employees. Hirslanden maintains social media accounts in German and French. The Swiss German clinics have a Xing company profile, a LinkedIn company profile, a Twitter account for job seekers (@HirslandenJobs), a Facebook page, as well as a YouTube channel with its own “Jobs & Careers” playlist. In the French-speaking regions of Switzerland, Hirslanden Romandie has a Twitter account (@hirslandenRmde), a Facebook page, as well as a YouTube playlist.
Know your own strengths and weaknesses
Think about what you’re good at and what areas you still need to improve in. In virtually every job interview you will be asked to talk about your strengths and weaknesses. The better you know yourself, the more convincing and authentic you will appear.
Consult third parties
Find out what kind of impression you make on others. It never hurts to check whether your view of yourself corresponds to how others see you. Ask acquaintances, friends or family members how they experience you as a person, what they like about your personality and where they think your weaknesses lie. You will be surprised by the honesty of the feedback you receive and how this can help you grow and develop.
A neat appearance always has a positive effect. There is no definitive dress code when it comes to job interviews. Depending on the role and the company, men and women could appear overdressed if they wear a suit. But you should always avoid light-coloured jeans, t-shirts, flip-flops, too much make-up and low-cut tops. Just follow your common sense. It’s important that you feel comfortable and not like you’re wearing a uniform that doesn’t suit you. In general: wear something slightly more formal than your everyday clothes and dress in a way that is appropriate for your industry.
Bring a pen and paper
Place a neutral, blank notepad and a pen in front of you. If you have also written down questions you have regarding the position, you won’t forget to discuss anything you’re unclear of and it will also demonstrate to the interviewer(s) that you have spent time thinking about the job.
Bring any relevant documents
If you have documents relevant to the position, such as a Bachelor/Master thesis or an example of your writing or work, take copies with you in case you would like to show or give them to the interviewer(s).
Ask questions if something is unclear, or if you feel that you haven’t received all the necessary information. The more interactive the interview, the more enjoyable it is for the interviewer(s) and also for you. Never forget that the company and your potential supervisor are also being interviewed – by you.
Always be honest
You won’t get far by lying. The truth usually comes out, sooner or later. Avoid this kind of stress by thinking about how you are going to address negative events of the past, or gaps in your CV. No-one is perfect, in fact, our imperfections are what make us interesting.
Think about your decision
Give yourself some time after the interview to think about your decision. It’s always good to sleep on it, even if you felt great during the interview and would like to start work straight away.
Request feedback about the company’s decision
If your application is declined, ask about what factors led to the decision. Every job interview is good practice. They will make you more confident in future interviews and are an opportunity to learn how you respond to new and unusual situations. Even if you are disappointed, try to stay positive and think about the fact that your dream job is still out there somewhere.